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Smash Button

by Joe Newton

My heart is breaking and it’s my own fault. I started cheating on my husband of 29 years, casually at first — making out, getting groped, no penetrative sex — and then I met a man and we just clicked. I caught feelings and we started to have an intense, kinky, and very sexual and emotional relationship.

I love my husband. We are extremely compatible in so many ways, except this one: I am kinky and poly whereas he is vanilla and monogamous. Even though I haven’t disclosed my cheating to him, we have been talking about my desire to be non-monogamous. He knows I’m kinkier than he is, although I can’t disclose how I came to know I need BDSM in my life. I have also discovered that I am bisexual, but not biromantic. Because of this, my husband has moved on monogamy and agreed to be a little monogamish: he...

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...oved on monogamy and agreed to be a little monogamish: he consents to me exploring sexual encounters with women, primarily because he guiltily admits that he finds it a non-threatening turn-on since I am not romantically attracted to women. I have presented to my husband that I WANT to be non-monogamous and that I am capable of polyamory. He hasn’t consented. Even though he says he doesn’t want to say no or hold me back from exploring my sexuality, he says if I were to issue an ultimatum, we would get divorced. So, this is basically his ultimatum. Meanwhile, my lover and I have recognized that the struggles in our relationship stem from the fact that I am cheating on my husband. It raises doubts for my lover about whether I am deceiving him, since I am obviously capable of deceit. I hate this. When I ask him what he wants, my lover says he wants me not to hate myself so much. And so, we have decided to “pause” our affair until I can figure out how to get right with my husband and be able to be ethically non-monogamous. Adding to my heartbreak: I NEED both these relationships. My husband can only flex so far in the kink direction. He cannot be the dominant partner I need. I’ve told him this, more or less. And he takes it as saying that without that he is nothing, which is not true. He is almost everything, but he can’t stand being not “enough.” He is afraid that I will resent him if he doesn’t agree to non-monogamy. Which I don’t. But if we divorce so I can feel fulfilled, that will destroy him. I don’t think he believes I would choose non-monogamy or kink over him. And I really don’t want to leave him or lose my lover. I cannot choose between them. I need them both. My heart is BREAKING. Help. Brokenhearted And Seeking Insightful Counsel I’m sorry about your heart but I can’t with your problem. The mail this week — the mail for weeks — has been nothing but letters from long-married straight people thinking about cheating or already cheating or desperately trying to renegotiate monogamous commitments they made decades ago or desperately pretending that’s what they’re doing, i.e., they’re going through the motions of discussing ethical non-monogamy in the hopes of legitimizing the non-ethical non-monogamy they’re already practicing. I don’t mean to come across as unsympathetic, BASIC, but come on now. You’ve been smashing your pussy down on the self-destruct button for a while. You didn’t get the answer you wanted from your husband — permission to fuck other men — and instead of countering his ultimatum (“No fucking around with other men or it’s over”) with your own ultimatum (“Permission to fuck around with other men or it’s over”), you went out and started fucking around with other men. You may not have been consciously aware that you were smashing your pussy down on the self-destruct button, but you knew or should have known you were hurling turds at an apparatus with rotating blades. This is all going to come out. Your husband is going to find out about your lover and then you’re going to find out whether your husband’s threat to divorce was serious. Threatening to divorce someone you love is easy, actually divorcing someone you love is hard. And divorce is a long, drawn-out process, so your husband will have time to reconsider his decision once your shit make it all the way through his fan. But only the truth can free you from the miserable corner into which you’ve painted yourself. And while it’s going to be unpleasant, telling the truth — the messy, painful truth — is the only way out. Sometimes married people smash their hands/mouths/pussies/dicks down on the self-destruct button so hard the inevitable explosion destroys their marriages. Sometimes that’s exactly what they want. But sometimes a marriage survives the explosion and something new and beautiful — or more tolerable and somewhat functional — gets built on the rubble. Maybe you’ll be one of the lucky ones. But there’s only one way to find out. Alright, I dug through the mail for questions that aren’t about cheating or negotiating non-monogamy or embracing tolyamory and managed to find a few… I am invited to a (gay) sex party. When invited for dinner you bring a bottle of wine, but what is the proper etiquette for a sex party? Come showered and douched, I guess. What else? Do I bring something for the host? Newby At Sex Party A host gift is a thoughtful idea, NASP, but slipping your (gay) host a little cash — paper towels are way more expensive than they used to be — may be a better idea. “I usually ask for a £5 tip to cover the costs of food, soft drinks, and hard drinks I provide at the parties I run,” said Ali Bushell, author of the Sex Party Handbook. “Even if the host of NASP’s first sex party doesn’t ask for money, being willing to tip the host $10 or so is always appreciated. It’s especially appreciated when the guest acknowledges the time and effort that went into making the event happen and mentions that they’re grateful.” While Bushell makes alcoholic beverages available at the parties he hosts in his London home, not all sex party hosts serve booze. “Bringing alcohol isn’t a terrible idea,” said Bushell, “but NASP needs to bear in mind some people might prefer the party to be dry. So, if he’s thinking of bringing a six pack of beer or bottle of wine to share, best to check with the host about whether that would be welcome.” And big ups to arriving recently douched and freshly showered. Also: don’t wear cologne, put your phone away, be polite when you decline to play with someone, be just as polite when someone declines to play with you, get on PrEP (prevents HIV infection), look into DoxyPEP (offers some protection against other sexually transmitted infections), and maybe consider using condoms (they offer excellent protection against HIV and other STIs). Ali Bushell’s Sex Party Handbook is available on Amazon. When he’s not hosing sex parties, Bushell hosts the The Healers Guild, a podcast for people seeking or offering healing. I have a lover and we are long-distance. I’d like to spend the limited time we have in person doing physical activities — getting intimate — but he takes a long time to warm up and needs to spend a lot of time talking first. If we had all the time in the world, that wouldn’t be a problem, but we usually only see each other on business trips that take us to each other’s cities. Can we cut to the chase without shortchanging his need to reconnect emotionally first? Down To Business  You can’t.  I’m a 28-year-old woman in Australia. I am talking to a very hot dominant man in his forties that I met on reddit who’s in my area. He gives me extremely explicit tasks that he wants photos of constantly including writing his initials on me each day. I have verified his ID — I know his real name and he is who he says he is — but other than the fact that he’s married and very private about his life, I don’t know much about him. I’m enjoying having a regular (constant!) D/s dynamic in my life but I’m worried these photos would ruin me if they got out. But I’m enjoying our online play so much I’ve stopped talking to people on dating apps because his play is more fun for me. It’s hard to find hot kinky people that are normal/hot IRL in my area. Advice please? Personal Images Complicate Situation The risk you’re running — losing control of your photos — is not some ancillary risk that you can mitigate or eliminate while still enjoying this connection. Your entire relationship with this man consists of taking the pictures he orders you to and then sending them to him. You want this sexy dominant man to have power over you — you’re turned on by the thought of him having power over you — and these photos are the power he has over you. You aren’t sending photos to get sex, PICS, the sending of photos is the sex. Now, sex is never risk-free — there’s no such things as entirely safe sex — but sane people do what they can to mitigate risks. Gay men take PrEP so they can enjoy PIB without having to worry about the risk of contracting HIV; straight women use birth control so they can enjoy PIV without having to worry about the risk of contracting feti. But the only way to eliminate your risk is to stop sending these photos — to abstain from sending more photos — but that also eliminates everything pleasurable about this connection. All that said, PICS, the fact that you know this man’s name — and that you know he’s married — does provide you with some protection. If this man were to post your photos online because you wanted to end the relationship, you have legal recourse — revenge porn is a crime in Australia — and that fact should hopefully motivate this man to keep your photos on a secure server and not do anything stupid or vindictive if you decide you’re done following his orders. Got problems? Email your question to Dan here! Or record your question for the Lovecast here! Follow Dan on Instagram and Threads @DanSavage. Follow Dan on BlueSky @DanSavage. The best porn film festival in the world opened last weekend in Seattle and will start touring soon to cities across North America and Europe! Go to HUMP! Film Fest to check out the new films and get your HUMP! 2024 now!  

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